Is Hair Loss Normal
We all lose hair. Some hair loss is perfectly normal, as hair falls out after it completes the 2 to 6 year growth phase. You may notice loose hairs that have fallen out on your clothes or in your comb or hairbrush. The average person loses about 50 to 100 hairs per day. This is normal. What is not normal? Excessive hair loss in women may be apparent by the following: If your hair starts to fall out in clumps, especially when you brush or comb it or are in the shower, you should see your doctor. If you notice that you can see larger areas of your scalp or that your hair is thinning, see your dermatologist for diagnosis and treatment of your hair loss condition.
First How Stress Affects Your Hair
Both Rieder and Wechsler say that the type of stress-induced hair loss that affects most people is known as telogen effluvium. The condition commonly surfaces two to three months after a stressful event such as a medical procedure, illness, psychological stressor, weight loss, or even the start of a new medication, says Rieder. Essentially, your hair follicles suddenly shift from the anagen, or growth, phase to the resting phase, called telogen, Wechsler explains. And the loss can be quite dramatic.;
Though theres much we dont know about how telogen effluvium strikes, additional research suggests that cortisol, a stress hormone, may interfere with normal functioning of the hair follicle. Bottom line: If youre pumping out cortisol because youre feeling tense or anxious, your hair may react accordingly.
Another less common condition called alopecia areata occurs when your immune system attacks your follicles. Like all autoimmune diseases, this can be brought on in susceptible individuals by a stressor, explains Wechsler. Even less common is trichotillomania , which is when stress leads you to pull out your hair.
Stress And Hair Loss: Potential Ways To Cope
Any number of stressful situations can trigger hair loss, including pregnancy, chronic illness, injury, relationship issues, financial concerns, poor nutrition, surgery, medications such as antidepressants, and even jet lag. To counteract stress and protect your hair, try these tips:
- Learn and practice relaxation techniques regularly
- Get regular exercise, which helps manage stress and its effects
- Spend time with positive people isolating yourself can make stress worse
- Seek professional help from a therapist
- Eat a healthy diet and take a multivitamin if your doctor recommends it
- Treat your hair with care when washing, drying, and styling it
Hair loss from stress doesnt have to be permanent. If it continues, talk to a doctor about a prescription or over-the-counter remedy to spark hair regrowth.
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Check The Health Of Your Scalp
A healthy scalp can solve a lot of your stress-related hair concerns. When you are concerned about hair loss due to stress, do not try harsh products with sulphates. Opt for hair products that will prevent stress-related hair loss.
Try the Keracare Repair Combo consisting of the Keracare Repair Shampoo and Mask to gently cleanse and restore the strength of your stressed hair.;
Follow Mindful Eating Habits
You should always include adequate amounts of nourishing superfoods to strengthen your hair follicles. The food you consume will tackle stress hormones in your body and keep your hair tissues healthy. The goal is to eat more leafy vegetables, fruits and whole grains, which have more amino acids and nutrients to sustain the health of your hair. Also, reduce or entirely refrain from eating sugar treats, red meat or caffeinated beverages.
Along with eating superfoods, you can also incorporate them in your hair care regime. Opt for the;Avocado Nourish Duo to strengthen and gradually nourish your hair.
- Wet your hair and apply the Avocado Nourish Shampoo on the scalp.
- Gently massage your scalp in circular motions and work up the lather through the lengths of hair.
- Rinse thoroughly.
- Take generous amounts of the Avocado Nourish Mask and distribute it evenly through hair while massaging your scalp.
- Leave it on for 3 mins and rinse off with cold water.
The Avocado Nourish Duo is primarily made of avocados that help maintain the strength of your stressed hair. The shampoo and mask are enriched with vitamin B, E, and fatty acids that will repair hair damage caused by external aggressors like pollution and sun exposure. It is also enriched with almond oil that will not only nourish your hair but also keep your locks soft and glossy. It works best for fragile hair.
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How Do I Know If My Hair Is Falling Out Due To Stress
More than 100 strands of hair clogging your shower drain or on the hair brush is a sure shot sign of hair loss. In telogen effluvium, you will notice hair thinning on the scalp. With alopecia, you may notice bald patches of hair on the scalp. With Trichotillomania, which causes constant pulling of hair, you may notice that your hair volume has reduced over time.
How To Prevent Hair Loss Due To Stress
This article was medically reviewed by Sarah Gehrke, RN, MS. Sarah Gehrke is a Registered Nurse and Licensed Massage Therapist in Texas. Sarah has over 10 years of experience teaching and practicing phlebotomy and intravenous therapy using physical, psychological, and emotional support. She received her Massage Therapist License from the Amarillo Massage Therapy Institute in 2008 and a M.S. in Nursing from the University of Phoenix in 2013.There are 15 references cited in this article, which can be found at the bottom of the page.wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. This article received 13 testimonials and 86% of readers who voted found it helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 858,704 times.
Sometimes emotional or physical stress can lead to hair loss, which is a serious concern for most people and something they wish to reverse. However, due to the length of the hair growth cycle, people often only begin losing their hair weeks or months after the stressful event has occurred, and the hair loss can continue for several months afterwards. Luckily, hair will usually grow back on its own once the source of stress has been removed, but there are several things you can do to help the process along. By easing your stress and taking good care of your hair, you can reduce the effects of hair loss.
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How To Manage Stress
Its very distressing when you feel you are losing your hair and it can cause intense suffering and can affect your social functioning and ability to work.
Dr Lee said: Hair loss has severe psychological effects including loss of self-esteem, poor body image, loss of confidence, depression, and anxiety.
Women with high-stress levels are 11 times more likely to be suffering from hair loss than women with normal stress levels.
See your doctor if you are concerned about hair loss sooner rather than later.
The doctor will ask questions and is likely to arrange blood tests to rule out common causes such as iron deficiency, or a low thyroid hormone level.
There are a range of different types and causes of hair loss, and once a diagnosis is made, the best treatment can be offered. You may need to see a consultant dermatologist.
You may prefer to arrange to see a hair specialist a trichologist. This is not available on the NHS. You can find a qualified trichologist here.
Looking for somewhere to start? Dr Lee has revealed five ways to deal with stress-related hair loss.
Will It Grow Back
In most cases, thankfully, yes. Telogen effluvium is often a temporary thing, Rieder says. The vast majority of cases will resolve within a few months purely on their own. In the case of alopecia areata, says Wechsler, steroid injections are often prescribed. The effects of the injection typically last a month, and then Ill bring a patient back in for another roundit usually takes several, she explains. In both conditions, topical minoxidil, a commonly used hair loss medication, probably wont do a thing. So pass on the Rogaine.
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How Hormone Imbalance Leads To Thinning Hair
Women have 40% fewer androgen receptors than men do. So, while female hair thinning patterns tend to be different from menâs, DHT can still cause hair to grow thinner and less densely.
Women have 40% fewer androgen receptors than men do. So, while female hair thinning patterns tend to be different from menâs, DHT can still cause hair to grow thinner and less densely.
Women often see changes in their hairline or a widening part. You may also experience acne, unwanted facial hair growth, or irregular periods.
DHT is an androgen hormone thatâs responsible for the development of male traits. Women have a much lower level of it than men, but DHT can become elevated in women due to triggers like stress, glucose metabolism, and hormonal changes in motherhood. Itâs also produced in the scalp and causes the hair follicle to slowly shrink and eventually close entirely so that hair can no longer grow back. DHT sensitivity can also be caused by aging, smoking, medications, poor diet, and environmental toxins.
Saw Palmetto, Pumpkin Seed, Stinging Nettle, and African Cherry help to support healthy hormones and prevent the conversion of testosterone into DHT, which are critical for hair growth.
How To Stop Stress Hair Loss
;If you are stressed out, you are probably craving high fat and sugary foods as a way to comfort yourself. You also are probably drinking more caffeine to compensate for poor sleep. But the worst thing you can do when you are already stressed out is add a bad diet to the mix.
When your body is stressed out it needs the vitamins and minerals from a healthy diet more than ever. Even though you may be craving comfort foods, make a conscious choice to eat more fruits and vegetables and lean protein. Cut back on the caffeine. Drink relaxing herbal teas instead. Improve the quality of your diet and you will notice a big difference in how you feel.
Get more sleep:
If you are stressed out, you are probably not sleeping well. The physical stress of not sleeping can increase the amount of hair loss due to stress. Personally I would avoid prescription drugs and sleep aids . Use Lavender or Jasmine essential oil in the bedroom to soothe your mind at night. Or put some dried Lavender flowers in your pillowcase. A cup of chamomile tea or peppermint tea at bedtime can be very soothing.;
If you are having difficulty sleeping, as many people do, try sleep hypnosis or self hypnosis for sleep.;
Learn Mind Power techniques like Meditation or self hypnosis
Learning mind power techniques, like meditation, auto suggestionand self hypnosis, can help you relax and feel more in control.;
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Medication For Hair Loss
Minoxidil, or Rogaine, is a topical medication that is used to treat female pattern hair loss and male-pattern baldness. It was initially developed as a blood pressure medication and was used off-label to treat hair loss until it became FDA-approved for that purpose. Minoxidil can slow the progression of hair loss. Most women who use the medication experience regrowth of hair. The medication needs to be used continuously to maintain results. Other types of treatment work for different kinds of hair loss. Corticosteroids help suppress the immune response that damages hair follicles in people who have alopecia areata. Once the follicles recover, hair can grow back. If nutritional deficiencies underlie hair loss, eating a healthy diet with adequate and protein and nutrients can help you regrow hair. Certain medical problems may trigger hair loss. Adequately treating these conditions may help restore hair growth.
Why Hair Loss Happens
To understand stress-related hair loss, you have to first consider the three-step hair-growing cycle. Anagen is the hairs growth phase, catagen is the resting phase, and telogen is the shedding phase, says Ziering. When you have stress, trauma, or sickness, it disrupts that normal cycle and causes the hair to remain in the shedding phase longer and the growth phase becomes shorter.
During a normal hair cycle, people shed 50 to 100 strands a day as hair grows and separates from each follicle . Essentially, new anagen hair pushes out old telogen hair. But if youre losing far more than 100 strands, you should be concerned, experts say.
To add a layer of trickiness to your hair situation, hair loss caused by stress take two to four months to materialize . So someone who contracted COVID several months ago may only now be experiencing hair loss. Once the stressor or illness is resolved, it take your hair about nine months to grow back to its full potential.
If your hair is still not back to usual by then, there could be another issue, like a genetic hair loss condition or an underlying inflammatory disorder. See a hair loss specialist or dermatologist to explore other potential causes. Early intervention is the key, says Ziering. You want to be consistent with a hair loss prevention treatment plan.
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Ways To Reverse Hair Loss From Stress
Can hair loss be related to stress? The bad news is yes, but the good news is that stress-induced hair loss is usually temporary.
âTelogen effluvium is the scientific name for stress-induced hair loss,â Robert Haber, MD, a board-certified dermatologist and hair transplant surgeon, tells WebMD Connect to Care. Haber says the sources of stress that can lead to this condition include:
- Emotional stress
- Significant weight loss
âFortunately, if the hair loss is strictly due to the stress, complete recovery often occurs after several months to a year,â Haber says.
If youâve been affected by hair loss from stress, there are some important steps you can take.
Manage Your Stress Levels
A period of very high stress can trigger telogen effluvium. While some amount of stress is normal and harmless, working to manage stress is important for many aspects of health, including your hairâs health. According to Mayo Clinic, âsignificant stress pushes large numbers of hair follicles into a resting phase. Within a few months, affected hairs might fall out suddenly when simply combing or washing your hair.â
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How Stress Can Lead To Hair Loss
You may have heard that stress can cause hair loss, and its true. While the first two causes of hair loss are genetically programmed, hair loss due to stress is environmentally caused and may be more easily controlled if the stress can be managed.
Excessive physical or emotional stresslike that associated with injury, illness, or surgerycan cause one of two types of hair loss:
- Alopecia areata: This stress-induced hair loss involves a white blood cell attack on the hair follicles. With this type of hair loss, the hair also falls out within weeks , but can involve the entire scalp and even body hair. Hair may grow back on its own, but treatment may also be required.
- Telogen effluvium: With this more common and less severe type of hair loss, the hair stops growing and lies dormant, only to fall out 2 or 3 months later. Then it grows back within 6 to 9 months.
So What Can I Do About Stress
Of course, one of the best ways to address stress-induced hair loss is to deal with your stress. That means finding the stress management techniques that work for youand making them part of your regular self-care routine. I typically recommend deep abdominal breathing, yoga, Pilates, meditation and even ASMR, says Rieder. All can be very helpful.
So take a deep breath, relax, and chill outyour hair will thank you.
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What Are The Cycles Of Hair Growth
Hair goes through three cycles:
- The anagen phase can last from two years to eight years. This phase generally refers to about 85% to 90% of the hair on your head.
- The catagen phase is the time that hair follicles shrink and takes about two to three weeks.
- The telogen phase takes about two to four months. At the end of this phase, the hair falls out.
Your shorter hairs like eyelashes, arm and leg hair and eyebrows have a short anagen phase about one month. Your scalp hair can last up to six years or even longer.
Best Ways To Prevent Hair Problems From Stress
If you try some of these tips youll see improvements in the health and fullness of your hair. Remember that hair growth takes time and that there are many causes that are more likely than stress for hair problems.
The best way to prevent hair loss due to stress is to try to reduce stress is by being healthy, eating a good diet, exercising regularly, and making sure you take time to relax and distress.
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Can Stress Cause Hair Loss Whats The Connection
Can stress lead to hair loss? Yes, studies suggest that stress does impact hair follicles, causing hair to fall out. Factors like physical and emotional stress, injury, and anxiety can trigger hair loss. Incidents like accidents, hospitalization, infection, financial burdens, debt, death of a loved one, work-related issues, etc., are significant contributors to stress.
Fortunately, stress-related hair loss is usually temporary, lasting only for three to six months before your normal hair cycle resumes.;
Types Of Stress Related Hair Loss
There are three main types of stress related hair loss. With each type of stress related hair loss, the exact link between the hair loss and stress is somewhat unclear.
1. Alopecia areata
With alopecia areata, the immune system turns on the hair follicles and causes hair to fall out, sometimes in large chunks. There may be several factors causing this type of hair loss, and stress is suspected to be one of them.
2. Telogen effluvium
With telogen effluvium, stress may send a number of hair follicles into a resting phase, stopping the hair from growing. Several months later, the hair attached to the affected follicles may start to fall out suddenly, in greater volume than normal. This is the most common type of stress related hair loss.
Trichotillomania;is very different than the previous two, as it involves a person compulsively pulling out their own hair, whether its from their head, their eyebrows or other areas of their body. A person usually develops this condition as a method of coping with stress, anxiety, depression, loneliness or boredom.
While stress will sometimes cause the hair loss directly, other times, the stress makes an existing condition worse. In some cases, the hair loss will cause the stress, rather than the other way around.
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